Bank of America plans to build new branch at 4747 W. Irving Park
by BRIAN NADIG
Bank of America has announced plans to replace its current facility at 4747 W. Irving Park Road with a smaller branch that would be built immediately to the east on the same property.
The bank sent letters to its customers earlier this week saying that the new branch will open in the fall of 2014. The bank plans to keep its existing facility open during the construction.
The new facility would be measure about 4,700 square feet.
The bank is looking to have the new branch be part of a larger redevelopment project. Several years ago the bank first announced plans to sell the property, which includes a large underutilized parking area.
Some residents have voiced objections to demolishing the bank’s current facility because of its ornate lobby, but bank officials have said that they would like a smaller facility that makes a more efficient use of its space.
Alderman John Arena (45th) said that no plans for the project have been submitted to the city but that he would like the redevelopment of the site to follow guidelines in the shopping district’s new master plan.
Arena has said that People’s Gas has expressed some preliminary interest in selling its property, which is located just to the east of the bank site at 4747 W. Irving Park Road, allowing for the possibility of even a larger redevelopment project for the area.
A former Bank of America facility at 4901 W. Irving Park Road was recently sold to the owner of Cermak Fresh Market. Tentative plans call for that building to be demolished to allow for a grocery store, but Arena has expressed concerns about the project, which would require the site’s parking lot to be rezoned and a rear alley to be vacated.